In crafting lessons for selected Folkstreams films, we learned from our advisory board that educators will want to teach other films as well, so we provide our lesson template and suggestions for adapting it. The Film Analysis Framework will help any viewer decode films more effectively, not only students.
For each film we suggest subject areas such as history and topics such as the American Dream or Great Depression. Lessons are geared to national standards in English Language Arts, Social Studies, Media Literacy, and Arts Education and address national and state standards in several disciplines. Discussion points and activities may be adapted for various levels and are organized in three stages: pre-viewing, viewing, and post-viewing. We provide scaffolding for students to consider themselves as participants in American culture and history and to analyze film as an art form as well as an introduction to unique cultural groups. Prompts and tools for students to document their own traditions and communities are embedded in each lesson, as are worksheets, assessment strategies, and resources. We also ask viewers to inventory their cultural assumptions about the subject before watching the film and then to consider these assumptions afterward.